11 Best Bucket List Books to Read (Including Mine!)

If you’ve already read about how to make a bucket list it is now time to find ideas for your own list. You can get inspiration from my bucket list (there’s over 1,000 things on it!), or another great way is through some of the fun bucket list books on the market.

Being an avid bucket lister, I’ve read almost all of them and here are some of my favorites.

11 Must-Read Bucket List Books

The Best Books About Bucket Lists and Living Yours!

1. Bucket List Adventures by Annette White

Of course I had to start with my bucket list book—shameless plug—but, I’m really proud to have written it.

Writing down the things you’d like to see and do before you die can be a fun experience. But simply writing a Bucket List and never actually doing anything on the list is a lesson in futility and frustration with yourself. Why can’t you ever reach your goals?

Don’t beat yourself up – get out there and live life! Author Annette White has made a second career out of writing her bucket list… and then crossing things off of it! One day this owner of a Michelin-recommended restaurant in Northern California decided to live her dream. On her popular blog, bucketlistjourney.net, she has chronicled her adventures on virtually every continent — from walking among wildebeests in Africa to climbing an active volcano in Guatemala to swimming in a lake in Palau surrounded by thousands of jellyfish. In Bucket List Adventures, she takes you along for the ride, and shows you how to live your adventures, too.

Bucket List Adventures is not only a practical travel book – sharing detailed information on lodging, helpful resources, etc. – but also an inspiration for people to step out of their comfort zones. In short, Annette helps readers to create their own Bucket List, and then she gives them the tools and encouragement they need to live that list. An extensive appendix includes information about 50 additional places to consider for your future adventures.

Imagine the sense of accomplishment and excitement when you finally reach your goals, and Bucket List Adventures wants to help you get there.

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The Bucket List Book 500 Things You Really Could Do


The Bucket List Book: 500 Things You Really Could Do by Elise De Rijck


What do you want to do in your lifetime? Have you ever thought about your desires and aspirations before reaching the milestones of 20, 30, 40, etc? Writing all these goals down will get you a bucket list, but what do you do then? This book will show you.

It gives you 500 ideas, presented in a playful way to make it more fun. As you accomplish the experience within its pages, you can also incorporate your own cool goals as they come up.

1,000 Places to See Before You Die by Patricia Schultz


1,000 Places to See Before You Die by Patricia Schultz

$6.36 – $32.80

1,000 Places to See Before You Die is one of the Big Daddys of all life lists for travel. If you have ever thought about going there, it is probably listed here. It is a hard core reference book, that has just as much information as inspiration. This is a tightly researched guide, which includes intriguing trivia and photographs. The only issue is trying to decide where to go on your first adventure; Halong Bay, Lizard Island Resort or Manual Antonio National Park?

5 Bucket List Ideas from this Book:

  • Bike Great Ocean Road
  • Balloon in Burgandy
  • Dog Sled in Scandanavia
  • Fish at Li River
  • Hike at Yosemite National Park


The Bucket List: 1000 Adventures Big & Small by Kath Stathers

$19.89 – $100.00

This book is a comprehensive compilation of one-of-a-kind experiences and adventures from around the world, designed to inspire readers to embrace life’s endless possibilities. With its captivating descriptions and stunning visuals, it takes you on a journey through a diverse range of activities, from thrilling outdoor pursuits to enriching cultural experiences. Whether you’re seeking adrenaline-fueled adventures or meaningful encounters, this book offers a wealth of ideas and inspiration to create your own personalized bucket list. 

5 Bucket List Ideas from this Book:

  • Walk on A Glacier in Jostedal, Norway
  • Run with a Herd of Reindeer in Lapland, Finland
  • Drive Around Iceland’s Coastline
  • Track the Alaskan Big Five at Denali National Park
  • Drink Whiskey Chilled in Glacial Ice in Argentina

The BucketFck it List 3,669 Things to Do. Or Not. Whatever


The Bucket/F*ck it List: 3,669 Things to Do. Or Not. Whatever by Sara Kinninmont

$12.99 – $18.75

This book takes a lighthearted and fun approach to the concept of bucket lists, offering a collection of both amusing and outrageous suggestions for things to do, or not do in life. With its witty commentary and tongue-in-cheek tone, it encourages readers to embrace spontaneity, break free from societal norms, and find joy in the unexpected. Whether you’re looking for a good laugh or seeking unconventional ideas to spice up your life, “The Bucket/F*ck it List” provides a refreshing perspective on living life to the fullest, reminding us to have fun and not take everything too seriously.

5 Bucket List Ideas from this Book:

  • Taste Turtle Soup
  • Smoke a Joint with Seth Rogen
  • Go to Costco and Only Buy One Thing
  • Screen Print Your Own T-Shirt
  • Watch Wrestlemania

101 Things to Do Before You Die


101 Things To Do Before You Die by Richard Horne

$19.95 – $26.99

One of the most popular of the bucket list books, 101 Things to Do Before You Die features 101 of, what seems like, the most popular bucket list goals, such as, see the space shuttle launch and ride the world’s biggest roller coasters. This is a fun life-to-do List book with journal space to keep track of goals achieved, star stickers so you can reward yourself upon completion and informative factoids about each one. Once completed, it can be kept as somewhat of an autobiography of your adventures. The only negative is, due to the limited amount of goals, you most likely will just use this as a supplement to your own list.

5 Bucket List Ideas from this Book:

  • Catch a Fish with Your Bare Hands,
  • Meet Your Idol
  • Invent Something
  • Crash an A-List Party
  • Experience Weightlessness

2,001 Things to Do Before You Die by Dane Sherwood


2,001 Things to Do Before You Die by Dane Sherwood


2,001 Things to Do Before You Die is a handy check list that is the shorter version of The Wish List. Just like Kipfer’s book, this is just a list of goals with sporadic inspirational quotes throughout.

Some of the aspirations are redundant (ie: get call waiting & get rid of call waiting) and highly unlikely (like waking up next to Brad Pitt). If I had to choose between the two bucket list books, I would opt for The Wish List instead.

5 Bucket List Ideas from this Book:

  • Make Paper Dolls
  • Build an Igloo
  • Be Silent for a Week
  • Start a Pillow Fight
  • Kiss the Blarney Stone

Make Your Own Bucket List How To Design Yours Before You Kick It by Andrew Gall


Make Your Own Bucket List: How To Design Yours Before You Kick It by Andrew Gall


Some people may dream about driving a luxury car while others want to eat gelato in Italy or learn to meditate. But, that doesn’t mean that you want to accomplish those things. That’s where this book can help. This book empowers you to embark on a personal journey tailored to your wildest passions, unveiling unforgettable destinations and uncharted adventures that were once unimaginable—yet all on your own terms.

5 Bucket List Ideas from this Book:

  • Confront a Past Embarrassment
  • Eat the Most Memorable Meal Imaginable
  • Embark Upon an Epic Animal Adventure
  • Conquer Your Biggest Fear
  • Drive Cross-Country

The Big Bucket List Book 133 Experiences of a Lifetime by Gin Sander


The Big Bucket List Book: 133 Experiences of a Lifetime by Gin Sander

$9.99 – $12.35

The Big Bucket List Book has over 130 refreshing ideas designed to infuse your life with lots of adventure, plus a little glamor and style—suitable for every budget and level of daring. Whether you’re seeking inspiration for your own bucket list or simply looking to explore the world through captivating stories, “The Big Bucket List Book” serves as a gateway to a world of extraordinary possibilities. 

5 Bucket List Ideas from this Book:

  • Spend an Evening in a Wine Cave
  • Drive a Stick Shift
  • Create Your Family’s Memoir
  • Cook Your Way Through a Cookbook
  • Share Your Words in a Poetry Slam

The Bucket List Places to Find Peace and Quiet by Victoria Ward


The Bucket List: Places to Find Peace and Quiet by Victoria Ward


“The Bucket List: Places to Find Peace and Quiet” is a captivating guide that invites readers to explore serene urban hideaways, pristine wilderness retreats, and spiritual sanctuaries worldwide. From small parks and hidden museums to tranquil natural settings, each destination offers an opportunity to escape the chaos of everyday life and find moments of relaxation and introspection. Ideal for recent graduates, daydreamers, and those seeking a rejuvenating sabbatical, this expertly curated collection inspires readers to discover serenity and embrace the world through a renewed perspective.

5 Bucket List Ideas from this Book:

  • San Juan Islands, Washington
  • Nan Madol in Pohnpei, Micronesia
  • The Tao of Tea in Portland, Oregon
  • Joelan Beach Fales in Samoa, Polynesia
  • Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

The Wish List by Barbara Ann Kipfer


The Wish List by Barbara Ann Kipfer


Written by the same author as 14,000 Things to be Happy About, The Wish List is a catalogue of close to 6,000 unexpected goals, everything from write a love poem to watch the sun set over Machu Picchu. The best

part about this book is the massive amount of aspirations that are listed, you’ll be sure to find quite a few to add to your own life-to-do-list. They even include blank spots for you to incorporate anything they might have missed. The problem is that the goals are not categorized in any way, so make sure you mark everything you are interested in the first time around because you most likely won’t be able to find it again. The Wish List is strictly a “list” book, if you are looking for inspirational anecdotes or educational information, this is not the one for you.

5 Bucket List Ideas from this Book:

  • Live in a Castle with a Moat
  • Be a Train Conductor
  • Adopt a Pet from the Humane Society
  • Play PacMan
  • Attend the Grand Ole Opry

In the realm of bucket list books, there is a wealth of inspiration waiting to be discovered. These carefully crafted works have the power to transport us to extraordinary places, challenge our perspectives, and ignite our sense of adventure. Whether you tackling your list solo, as a family or a couple, there is a book for everyone. 

This post may contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase through my links, I earn a commission that helps to keep this blog running—at no extra cost to you. For more information read my full disclosure.

more bucket list inspiration

How to Make a Bucket List: 5 Easy Steps to Create a Great One
Bucket List Meaning: What is it and What’s the Definition?
10 Incredible Ways a Bucket List Can Improve Your Life
12 Bucket List Goals That Can Actually Save You Money
My Bucket List: 1000+ Ideas
The Ultimate Bucket List Resource Guide
200 Bucket List Examples: 10,000 Things to do Before You Die
Life List: 100 Amazing Things to Do Before You Die

17 thoughts on “11 Best Bucket List Books to Read (Including Mine!)”

  1. My mom makes me turn a Christmas list in to her every August 1st.  101 Things To Do Before You Die and This Book Will Change Your Life were both on there. 
    I already own 2001 Things to Do Before You Die, I've had it for a couple of years now.  I wouldn't really recommend the book.  Aside from the goals you listed it included stupid ones like "grow a beard" and random things like that.
    I also own 1000 Places to See Before You Die, I think it's a great book but I would have liked some more information/details on some of the places.  I'm also not much of a foodie so I could have gone without the restaurants listed in the book.

    Nice write up, thanks for sharing.

  2. I was given 101 Things To Do Before You Die in 2009 and really introduced me to bucket lists and the community that’s on the web. It changed my life for and I’d recommend it to anyone just starting out on their bucket list journey.

  3. Your missing my massive inspirational bucketlist book best one out there with over 9000 ideas inside My Never Ending Journey Of Life by Lance Garbutt feel free take a look and everyone else sold over 88 books so far worldwide.

  4. I really impressed after read this because of some quality work and informative thoughts . I just wanna say thanks for the writer and wish you all the best for coming!.


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Annette White the Owner of Bucket List Journey
Hey Bucket Listers!
I'm Annette.

I’m a goal obsessed mid-lifer, traveler, experience collector, fear crusher, digital marketer and author with big bucket list dreams. Let's Connect!

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